Optus and Pentanet bring Cloud Gaming / NVIDIA GeForce Now to Australians
Optus has partnered with Pentanet Limited, an Australian internet Service Provider (ISP), to offer its customers NVIDIA GeForce NOW cloud gaming service. The popular cloud gaming service enables users to play video games in the cloud – that is, without the need to download or install them.
In essence, cloud gaming services allow users to stream games in real time. One key benefit of cloud gaming is that gamers no longer need a powerful gaming console or PC to play high-end games – they stream the games already in the clouds, making owning expensive hardware unnecessary.
NVIDIA GeForce NOW is a widely-used cloud gaming service, one of the most popular in the industry, offering a wide selection of games, including Fortnite, Call of Duty: Warzone, Grand Theft Auto V, and more. NVIDIA GeForce NOW is compatible with several devices, including smartphones, tablets, laptops, PCs, Macs, Samsung and LG smart TVs, etc.
In general, cloud gaming comes with a ton of benefits. The idea of removing gaming from localised storage and moving them to the cloud is, in essence, the key advantage in itself. And with a reliable SIM plan or ISP, streaming high-end games becomes similar to streaming Netflix – you don’t need fancy gadgets.
Here’s a quick breakdown of some of the many benefits of cloud gaming:
- Almost any device will do
With cloud gaming, your device doesn’t matter nearly as much. Users can play advanced games without a high-end PC, console, or mobile phone. That’s because the users live-stream the games from the clouds rather than their local storage.
Because cloud gaming is compatible with a wide range of devices, mobile users can take comfort in its portability. Even users who are heavy PC gamers can log in from anywhere without having to truck heavy hardware or multiple game discs around.
- Low latency
One of the benefits of 5G is its low latency, which comes in handy for cloud gaming. But cloud gaming also has low latency, reducing delays to the bare minimum. That means that when a player presses a button, the relevant action takes place on the screen almost instantly, thereby boosting the gaming experience.
- Affordable gaming
Video game consoles are increasingly expensive, and so are the games themselves. But with cloud gaming, users can play high-end games on various devices, eliminating the need for pricey consoles. Further, cloud gaming services like GeForce NOW are subscription-based, significantly reducing game prices.
Pentanet is a Perth-based ISP founded in 2017, reselling fixed-line services like NBN plans. The telco launched a streaming service with US tech giant NVIDIA in late 2021, making it the exclusive distributor of GeForce NOW in Australia and New Zealand. The cloud service streams gameplay directly from NVIDIA’s RTX Blade Servers, removing your need for fancy gadgets.
But although users don’t need devices with impressive specs to stream games on GeForce NOW, they still require reliable Internet connections with high speed and low latency, both critical features of 5G networks.
Because Pentanet doesn’t have a 5G network, it has partnered with Optus, the second-largest telco in Australia. Optus’ 5G network now boasts the fastest download speeds in Australia, according to the latest Opensignal report.
According to Optus Managing Director of Marketing and Revenue Matt Williams, “Cloud gaming is an ideal example for 5G in the home and on the go, given the need for high speed, low latency connectivity, and we are excited that we will be able to offer that to our customers very soon.”
The deal, which has an initial life span of 12 months beginning 7 March 2023, grants Optus reseller exclusivity for a minimum of six months. The length of exclusivity can also be expanded later based on the number of paid subscribers.
The partnership makes Optus the first full telco in Australia to offer cloud gaming to customers on both fixed-wireless and mobile services. Expect NVIDIA GeForce NOW to be added to Optus’ SubHub subscription platform halfway through the year, simplifying the process for customers using the many features on the Optus Living Network.
Gaming is a big deal worldwide, and Australia is no exception. By December of last year, more than 311,000 gamers across New Zealand and Australia had signed up for GeForce NOW, indicating a fivefold rise year-on-year. In fact, following the announcement of a partnership between Pentanet and Optus, Pentanet shares surged 69 percent.
Optus is wise to have caught on to the cloud gaming wave early. With the many features available on the Optus Living Network and the ease of signing up for and managing your GeForce NOW membership via SubHub, the telco might be heading down the right path of innovation. Expect to see the other major telcos launch cloud gaming services if this goes well.